Prayer shaming while praying to the government

When a tragedy strikes, it seems natural for those affected to ask for people’s prayers and for those concerned to pray for the victims.  This held true with the recent shootings in Colorado Springs and San Bernadino.  But this time, multiple pundits and media figures mocked those who were praying.  Prayer won’t solve the problem, went the theme, gun control will!

Lutheran journalist Mollie Hemingway has written a piece about this that you need to read all the way through.  She cites the various commentators and publications that indulged in this “prayer shaming.”  She then showed how they too are praying with unquestioning faith to their omnipotent deity–the federal government!  She concludes with an excellent discussion of what Christian prayer is and why it is important.  I’ll quote the first few paragraphs after the jump, but then click the link to read the whole thing. [Read more...]

What members of the LCMS actually believe

That Pew Religious Landscape study we blogged about last month now has denominational breakdowns.  This includes information about demographics, political beliefs, religious beliefs, and moral beliefs.

Members of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (categorized under “evangelical,” “Lutheran family”) are not as conservative as their church is (though the same could be said of other “conservative” church bodies).

After the jump, some surprises that pastors need to know about. [Read more...]

Top 25 Christian Classics

Christian History surveyed 70 of its authors to compile the 25 most influential Christian writings, after the Bible.   Martin Luther had three titles, second only to St. Augustine, who had four.  See the list and links after the jump.

[Read more...]

LCMS dissolves relationship with Boy Scouts

The Lutheran Church Missouri Synod has formally dissolved its Memorandum of Understanding with the Boy Scouts of America.  As of now, congregations may still sponsor troops, though a task force will apparently study whether that should continue.  The action is due to the Boy Scouts’ decision to allow for gay scoutmasters and various legal issues that grow out of that decision.

I wonder if this could help the LCMS relationship with the Wisconsin Synod (WELS) and the Evangelical Synod (ELS), who rejected scouting a long time ago, though on grounds of syncretism and unionism rather than the gay revolution. [Read more...]

Russian Orthodox declare “holy war” against terrorism

The Orthodox church has once against assumed its traditional role in Russia, giving moral support to the reigning regime.  Now in support of the Russian military intervention in Syria, the church has declared a “holy war” against terrorism.

Could any of you Orthodox readers explain the relationship between the various branches of your church?  I know that there is supposed to be a doctrinal unity between them all, and they all uphold the authority of the bishops.  Do the actions of these Russian bishops carry weight with you?  (I know, for example, that the murdered Czar and his family members have been or are being canonized by the Russian church.  So, if you are Antiochan Orthodox, are you obliged also to recognize them as saints?)

But can there really be a Christian jihad?

[Read more...]

Whether or not we kick the football

The Peanuts Movie currently in  theaters is a critical and commercial hit, and it brings back to mind the genius of cartoonist Charles Schulz.  I stumbled upon a great quotation from Schulz–a devout Christian–about humor, happiness, grace, and faith. [Read more...]


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